It’s tricky to decide what to wear for fall portrait sessions in the mountains.When the cold comes in early September, sometimes it’s just too cold for a dress and sandals by themselves. I have some suggestions for new fall styles that will help you be fashionable, help you POP in front of those yellow aspen trees, and keep your color tones camera friendly.
First, let’s discuss color palettes. Just like in the summer, I recommend mute colors over bold primary ones. During fall, warm neutrals such as camel, taupe, cream, champagne, and great always look great. If you’d like to incorporate color into your session wardrobe, choose sophisticated jewel-toned versions of bright primary colors such as: mustard over yellow, burgundy over wed, camel over orange, sage or emerald over green, and navy over blue. These jewel tones will photograph beautifully in the Colorado fall season.
Now let’s talk about coordinating your outfit with your significant other or even your whole family. Keep in mind outfits will look most cohesive on camera when the color palette and wardrobe pieces coordinate, but don’t actually match. Meaning don’t everyone wear white and khaki (This isn’t your family photos circa 2010 on the beach, people!)
Wear a different dominant color, but stay within that color palette family. If you’re wearing a blush dress, then the guy can wear a navy coat with gray pants, paired with brown leather shoes. Little tip, it’s easier to pick your outfit first and then put together the guy or kiddos outfits based on that! That’s why I have these selections for you!
Shop this Colorado Fall style:
1 Fedora on Amazon
2 Warm Shaw on Amazon
3 Levi’s Jeans on Amazon
4 Naturalizer Boots on Amazon
5 Kendra Scott earrings on Nordstrom
Shop this Casual Chic Fall style:
1 Basic Dress on Amazon
2 Levi’s Jean Jacket on Amazon
3 Wrap Dress on Amazon
4 Booties on Amazon
5 Kids Cape on Janie and Jack
6 Kids Denim Leggings on Janie and Jack
7 Kids Booties on Janie and Jack
Shop these Flatter Figuring Wrap Dresses for Women and Girls:
1 Shirt Dress on Lulus
2 Girls Shirt Dress on HM
3 Linen Wrap Dress on Madewell
4 Floral Print Wrap Dress on Lulus
5 Navy Floral Wrap Dress on Lulus
6 Long Sleeve Shirt Dress on Amazon
Shop these Mens/Boys Plaid Styles:
1 Men’s Indigo Plaid on JCrew
2 Boy’s Linen Plaid on Zara
3 Plaid Jacket on Amazon
4 Men’s Cotton Plaid on Toad&Co.
5 Men’s Columbia Shirt on Amazon
6 Men’s Plaid on Gap/Old Navy
I’ve purchased a few of these pieces for my own wardrobe and can’t wait to wear them this fall! I love a good wrap dress so I got the blue striped shirt dress and the navy floral wrap dress from Lulus. I plan to wear them with my new Kendra Scott earrings that I got in my September Trunk Club from Nordstroms. Use my referral link to get a discount on your first trunk!
Already in Breckenridge and want something quick for your session? Here are my favorite boutiques on Main Street:
For the Guys, I recommend going to Mountain Goat on Breckenridge’s Main Street. For Ladies, my favorite boutiques in town are Ruby Jane, Beloved, Vintage Sweet and Chick, and Valley Girl. If you have little ones and need some last minute accessories or outfits, check out Ruby Jane and Breckenridge Kids.
I’d suggest clicking the Store links and see if your size is still available. Most of these pieces are handpicked by myself and my sister-in-law, Meaghen, who works for Amazon Fashion. If you choose to shop the Amazon links, I will receive a small commision with no extra cost to you!
Can’t wait for our portrait session!
I am so excited to share my first family portrait session in Breckenridge since March! It was a long awaited three months to be able to book sessions again. Breckenridge was just not the same without its hustle and bustle of tourists shopping on Main Street, long waits at restaurants and lift lines. I’m so grateful for people returning to our little mountain town!
Family Portrait Session Turned to Proposal Session
The Leeds family planned their first trip after quarantine to the mountains. They rented a home over in Buena Vista and planned to come over to Breckenridge to have their family session with me. The mom, Shannon, and Hayden her daughter’s boyfriend had a little idea. They decided to turn this family session into a surprise proposal to Hannah. It was so much fun pulling this off and making this super special for all of them to be there for the moment Hayden proposed.
Boreas Pass Road Location for Family Photo Shoot
This Breckenridge family portrait session took place at one of my favorite locations, Boreas Pass Road. Normally, the road would have been open to cars by this point in the summer. It was delayed, and though it is now open, the gate was still up during our session. It was still a nice private spot for our family session and the Leeds girls looked gorgeous in their summer dresses. Hannah and Abby were both wearing dresses from Lulus and now I want to revamp my whole summer wardrobe.
Want to see Hayden’s surprise proposal to Hannah? Of course you do! Take a look and see the sweet shock on her face when he got down on one knee.
I love these moments so much and am so grateful to get to capture milestone’s for people like this in the mountains!
There are so many fun family friendly summer activities in Breckenridge. When you’re bound for the Colorado mountains, it can feel overwhelming to try and fit in all the fun. I remember coming out to Breckenridge every summer to visit Tyson, and could never check it all off the list. If you’re coming to Breckenridge for a weekend or a week, I’ve got a local’s perspective and a few of my personal favorites to share with you!
See the Town Troll
(perfect for elementary aged kids)
Did you know that there’s a troll that lives in the forest here? Take the kids and visit Isaac Hearthstone on the Illinois Gulch Trail. It’s a short walk (like 400 feet short) and a perfect little trip to take young kids. The trailhead shares a parking lot with the Train park which is a favorite destination for my two-year-old who can’t get enough trains right now. So take the short walk in the woods to say hi to the large and lovable troll and then spend an hour in the shade at the Train Park. There are also hiking and biking paths to explore if you have more time and energy as a family.
Sit on the Beach at Frisco Bay
Frisco Bay Marina is a perfect destination for families who love both the water and the mountains. The large sandy beach has plenty of room for spreading out a blanket, building a sand castle and dipping your toes in the chilly lake. You can also rent paddle boards, kayaks, and canoes. I totally recommend bringing your own snacks and cooler or heading over to the Island Grill to get a beachy cocktail. My favorite is the Rum Runner! Their oriental salad is delicious too!
Rent Bikes and Ride Along the Rec Path
Another of my family friendly activities in Breckenridge is biking! We have the best rec path for biking. The rec path runs right through downtown Breckenridge and along the Blue River. Rent an ebike or Specialized bike to take the family on a cruise from Breckenridge to Frisco. You can even schedule a pick up from Alpine Sports at the Frisco Marina. Before your pickup, take a ride around Lake Dillon or explore Frisco Main Street. They have many great shops and restaurants as well.
Eat Outside on Breckenridge’s New Pedestrian Only Main Street
This won’t last forever, but until mid August 2020, you can sit outside at your favorite restaurant, take drinks to go, and have plenty of room to walk around Main Street and shop. My favorite rooftop patio is at Ridge Street Kitchen. Order some lunch and a cocktail over at Ridge Street Seafood and take your feast on the rooftop patio and enjoy one of the best views in Breckenridge. River Center Plaza is right off Main Street and has several live musicians playing throughout the summer during the lunch and dinner hours.
See an Elk or Moose
While we don’t have a wildlife refuge, it doesn’t mean there’s not a good chance that you can pull over and safely watch a grazing elk here. Dusk is the perfect time to see a herd of elk or the occasional moose. My recommendation is to take a drive late afternoon over the pass to Buena Vista and plan your return right around dusk (8:00ish in the summer). I’ve never not seen an antelope, herd of elk, and even a moose that time of night on my drive back to Breckenridge. There is also a beaver dam you can pull over and see in Blue River. Since you’re going to be over in Buena Vista, you have to grab an old fashioned burger at K’s Dairy Delite, Ice Cream at Louie’s, or grab a beer over at Eddy Line Brewery and walk along the river walk.
Make sure to capture this special vacation with a family portrait session. It’s a great way to remember your time in the mountains. Inevitably, when I photograph a family, I find out what they like to do and end up sharing many more personalized suggestions. I love being a local here with insider knowledge to share to help make family vacations even more memorable and fun.
This is the best time to frame and hang family photos in your home! Find yourself staring at blank walls lately? Yeah, me too. This whole social distancing thing has got us isolating at home and me with a whole lot more time on my hands. I thought that this is the best time to finally order the prints I’ve been meaning to hang up on my wall and share the journey with you.
Once I placed my order, my prints took two days to get to my mailbox. That’s it. So in two days, you can be hanging up your own family portraits in your home. Don’t be afraid to reuse old frames or check out my affordable recommendations from Amazon, Target, and IKEA and order your own to be delivered straight to your door.
But let’s take it one step at time. Here are five easy steps I have found to have the best success in hanging family photos around your home.
1. Pick a Spot In Your Home to Hang Family Photos
Think about where you might want to hang family photos. For example, if you want a display above your dining room table, consider one large piece. My lovely family clients from Missouri printed their 24×30 canvas to hang behind their kitchen table.
Think about putting your favorite family photos in the place you’ll see when you first come in your home. So that the second you get home, you’re greeted with your favorite moments of your life.
Trying to fill an empty hallway or entryway? Consider doing three large prints side by side that compliment each other. That’s one project that I’m working on right now. I love keeping things symmetrical, so I’m printing 11×14 prints to go in these three frames from IKEA. For our hallway wall, all of the ones I printed are from Fall, so that the colors compliment each other well.
Want to know a Stark family rule? No family pictures in the bathroom! It’s my only DO NOT DO when it comes to family pictures. Please don’t hang family pictures in your bathroom. Just don’t. No one wants eyes watching them when they’re doing their business! Maybe I’ve watched too much Harry Potter and think that the portraits are alive and can see and talk to you. That’s just my preference, so do what you want, but that’s a rule in the Stark house.
2. Choose Your Arrangement to Hang Family Photos
How many photos are you framing? Do you need a collage frame or one large frame. How about no frame at all? My most popular product in the print store is 24×36 gallery wraps. Eliminates the need for frames all together!
To figure out which pictures I want to hang together and in what order here’s what I did:
Use a program like Google Slides or Docs. Insert your images to one slide and make sure they look good together. Don’t be afraid to move them around and take out a picture you originally thought you would use for one that better fits. Use pictures from the same session, season, or at least have the same color tone. I also recommend changing up the dynamics of the images. One close up in the middle, with a far away shot to the left and a medium shot to the right looks really nice together.
These are not all from the same shoot. Put they were all taken during the Fall season. It helps the color tones stay more consistent which is important when pairing multiple photos together.
Black and White Prints
Thinking about printing in Black and White? I love black and white. Especially if you don’t want a lot of color in your bedroom or in a certain place in your home. I love prints with a lot of white in them so that there is a good amount of negative space in the image. If I didn’t edit your image in black and white, just send me a quick email and I’ll add a nicely edited black and white image of your favorites to your personalized online gallery. You can always request a color and black and white version of each picture before I deliver your online gallery, too.
3. Pick Your Style and Size of Your Frames
Once you have an arrangement in mind, you can choose your size and frame styles to hang family photos. Once you have a photo you want to frame, think about getting the frame before you buy. Your high resolution family photos look awesome when styled in a diptych, which is two pictures side by side. I like to style one close up and one further away.
Pick a frame style that works with your home decor. If you have a traditional style, opt for a classic frame like these white frames at Target. For the minimalist, opt for the beautiful natural grains of wood like these from Ikea. When in doubt, a clean white frame or sleek black gallery frame work in most interiors.
Shouldn’t your home be a reflection of the people living in it? I’ve learned a few little things from the one and only Joanna Gaines in her 2018 Winter edition of Magnolia Journal. Her story about “Reframing Gallery Walls” taught me a few things about hanging up frames for gallery walls.
Designing a Gallery Wall
You can read the full article here, since I’m not an interior designer. Though because I am a former English teacher, I’ve written a quick summary of the few inspiring ideas I learned from the expert:
- Mix it up to help tell your family story on your walls. A gallery wall is one of the most literal ways your home can tell your story. Mix in family portraits, candids from family trips or even moments in your home, and anything else that brings you joy.
- Once you’ve decided on the art content, choose your frame sizes and color. Consider canvas prints for a more laid-back look, grid of identical frames in a symmetrical arrangement (this is my personal favorite), or a variety of shapes, sizes and colors. The third option would have been my favorite about 10 years ago.
- Your gallery wall can and should evolve over time, just as you do. Don’t get hung up on choosing your family portraits from your family session. You can change your prints in your frames out as often as you’d like!
Add dimension to your gallery by placing frames on a shelf or ledge. Think about using a picture ledge to rest your frames on. It also keeps you from hanging each frame on the wall and you can switch out the photos more often, layer the frames, and decorate the ledge with the change of season. My BFF Joanna says it helps to keep the overall look from feeling flat and brings the wall to life.
5 Easy Steps to Choose Photos For Your Walls
I’m a visual perfectionist who takes photography and family photos very seriously, so again, here’s a few quick tips to choose and hang family photos in your home your home.
- Choose frames first or print canvases so that you don’t even need frames
- Pick where you’re going to hang the photo and if it’s going to be horizontal or vertical
- Choose your favorites in your gallery and order your prints straight from your gallery
- Print pictures from the same shoot, time of day, and season to hang together
Here are some of my favorite ways my clients have styled family photos:
4. How To Actually Hang the Frames On the Wall
Now to the fun part! I use craft paper and painters tape to plot out my plan for hanging the pictures. Nothing is worse than being the one who’s trying to hold up the frame to the wall and stretching back to see if it’s going to look good. This way, you can step back and see where the frames are going to look best without putting a single nail in the wall.
It’s easy to create these paper templates. I just got a roll of craft brown paper from Walmart and measured each frame by tracing them and cutting it out. When you’re ready to hang, mark where the nail goes on the paper, and hammer the nail through brown paper.
Sorry, my kid lives in just a pull up these days.
5. Where To Get the Prints Made and Purchase Frames For Your Family Photos
Get the look:
Light wood single picture frames
White Three picture collage
Natural wood magnetic frame
I print through the same print lab that my clients use in their personalized online gallery. My clients photos come from Millers Lab, and they are my favorite for all high quality printing in pretty much every size you could want. Choose your favorite family photos from our session, order them to fit the frame you like and that fit your space, and you’ll love having them around just like I do every time I come home.
Having these family photos all around the house is something that makes me so happy, and I love that we were able to frame them all in such a simple, classic, and timeless way. Hopefully, my tips will help you with your own family photos.
To get you started, use the code STARK10 to receive 10% off your next print order in your online gallery. If you’re not a client yet, and you want to schedule a family session, I’m starting to book Summer sessions starting June 1st. Now’s the time to get on my calendar because summer sessions fill up fast.
Thank you to all my clients who sent me a peek into their homes of what their prints from our session look like! I love them and am so honored to be able to create memories for your family!